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Report: 22-year-old has already played more games for Newcastle United than Eddie Howe was expecting this season
Photo by Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images

Report: 22-year-old has already played more games for Newcastle United than Eddie Howe was expecting this season

A report from The Athletic has suggested that Eddie Howe has selected one Newcastle United player more than expected this season.

Howe has overseen a solid start to Newcastle’s campaign, and the Magpies currently sit in 10th.

He’s had a host of new signings to integrate into his Newcastle squad that have already had a positive effect.

Nick Pope has immediately become Howe’s number one choice in goal, and broken into the England line-up due to Jordan Pickford’s injury.

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Alexander Isak already has a couple of goals since his record-breaking move from Real Sociedad.

However, the Swede has returned early from international duty with an injury, and is a doubt for the game against Fulham.

These two players have slotted straight into Howe’s side, however there’s one player who Howe might have already used more than he wanted to.

The Athletic report that Sven Botman has played more than expected already this season.

Howe is believed to have wanted to start the season with Dan Burn and Fabian Schar at centre-back.

However, an injury to Matt Targett forced Howe to change his plans and introduce Botman much earlier than expected.

Botman has already played more than expected

Botman arrived from Burnley for £35m from Lille at the start of the summer.

Howe seemed to be very impressed with Botman in pre-season, but didn’t have plans to play him immediately this season.

The Dutch defender even turned down a call-up to the under-21 national team this international break.

He ‘disappointed’ his international manager, all in an effort to break into Howe’s team.

Photo by Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images

Howe has had some tough choices to make at the back given how well Newcastle have defended this season.

Burn has already put in some brilliant performances this season, making it hard to bring Botman into the side.

Howe has already said what a massive fan he is of Botman.

He may not have wanted to introduce him so quickly, but playing Botman more than expected certainly hasn’t had a negative effect on Newcastle’s performances.

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